1.5 How Special We Think We Are

When the psychologist refers to someone with a superiority complex they will immediately compare them to someone with an inferiority complex. A person with a superiority complex has high expectations for themselves while someone with an inferiority complex has low expectations. This common definition of a superiority complex is not an attribute to normal; it is just a stage in a person’s constant swing between high and low expectations. A person could suffer from a superiority complex one day and then inferiority the next.

This attribute of “normal” is how we feel different and special from others, which results in naming it the special complex. The underlying attributes of the special complex are similarly used to describe someone with a superiority complex; defined as an exaggerated opinion of one’s worth and abilities. The difference is that a person’s belief in how special they are never changes. The special complex is our belief that we are one of a kind, our thoughts and dreams make us different. When we are riding high on success, we credit our personal effort that brought us the achievement. When we have a streak of bad luck we look to blame someone or something else. If we blamed all of our failures entirely on ourselves we would have to assume we knew better. It is hard for us to imagine that we could not have helped ourselves. Failure is harder to accept if we are to blame.

The special complex is a form of narcissism, but with the lack of physical vanity. It is the image we have of ourselves and how we impact others. We never truly know how we impact others. Since all we know is how we perceive them and not how others do, it is impossible for us to truly understand our impact on other people. Empathy is our attempt to relate to other people, but our special complex trumps this influence.

The special complex is our view of the world. It is a form of self-preservation since it makes us feel special. Life would be rather dismal if we did not find ourselves interesting.

This perception of our self worth is a primary attribute of “normal”. We all feel special; therefore it is “Normal”.

1.6 Reluctantly Hopeful

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